Starting lineups for Thursday’s Eastern League game between the Trenton Thunder and the Erie SeaWolves at Jerry Uht Park:
Trenton Thunder (33-24): 1. Abraham Almonte CF, 2. Jose Pirela 3B, 3. David Adams 2B, 4. Zoilo Almonte RF, 5. Melky Mesa DH, 6. Luke Murton 1B, 7. Jose Gil C, 8. Addison Maruszak SS, 9. Damon Sublett LF.
Starting pitcher: Mikey O’Brien RH (2-1, 3.65 ERA).
Erie SeaWolves (28-29): 1. Jamie Johnson CF, 2. Niuman Romero SS, 3. Nick Castellanos 3B, 4. Jordan Lennerton 1B, 5. Rawley Bishop LF, 6. Tony Plagman RF, 7. James McCann C, 8. Brandon Douglas 2B, 9. Corey Jones DH.
Starting pitcher: Jared Wesson LH (4-2, 5.83 ERA).
– Mike Copper
The SeaWolves go into their final regular season game against the Thunder with only 24 players.
The Detroit Tigers promoted relief pitcher Austin Wood to Triple-A Toledo before Thursday’s game. It’s the left-hander’s second assignment with the Mud Hens, whom he played for when the 2012 baseball season began.
Wood, 25, was 1-0 with a 3.12 earned-run average over 8 2/3 innings for the SeaWolves. He appeared in 10 games for Toledo before the Tigers recalled him to Erie May 7.
Those who play for and watch the SeaWolves can only hope to assume the same borderline sense of awe that catcher James McCann already has for third baseman Nick Castellanos.
The Tigers promoted McCann to Erie one day after Castellanos made his Double-A debut. Both were with Single-A Lakeland (Fla.) before then, where McCann and his teammates on the Flying Tigers watched Castellanos hit .405.
That average is why Castellanos’ 4-for-7 start with Erie didn’t overwhelm McCann when he spoke after Wednesday’s 7-4 loss to the Thunder.
“It was something fun to watch,” McCann said about Castellanos’ torment of Florida State League pitching. “ He’d be 0-for-2, and we’d say, ‘Well, here comes a hit.’ He’d get a hit, and guys (in the dugout) would just laugh. I don’t think he went more than two at-bats without getting a hit.”
Castellanos was Detroit’s first pick in the 2010 amateur draft, as was McCann in 2011. McCann, who hit .288 with Lakeland, makes his Erie debut Thursday.
McCann was called up to replace Rob Brantly, who was summoned to the Mud Hens when former SeaWolves catcher Bryan Holaday joined the Tigers.
Brantly singled and walked in his debut for the Mud Hens, who lost to Charlotte 5-1 in Wednesday night’s International League game at Fifth Third Field.
While Erie rejoices over the arrival of the Tigers’ previous two No. 1 picks from the draft, the parent club just concluded its selections for 2012.
Detroit was absent a first-round pick because it signed free-agent first baseman Prince Fielder in the offseason. That meant the defending American League Central Division champion didn’t take to Major League Baseball’s podium until the 91st pick.
That’s when the Tigers chose pitcher Jake Thompson of Rockwall-Heath High School in Texas. The right-hander must decide between Detroit and Texas Christian University, where he committed last November.
TCU is where Kevin Cron, the youngest son of SeaWolves manager Chris Cron, currently plays as an infielder.
Here’s the full list of Detroit’s 2012 draft picks. The list includes shortstop John Sansone of Neshannock High School, located outside New Castle.
MECA Inc. of Erie will hold the first of its two games with the Erie SeaWolves Saturday at 5:15 p.m. It’s a prelude to Erie’s Eastern League 7:05 p.m. game against the New Britain Rock Cats.
Call Karen Rose at 814 725-4370 for more information.